Out of his command arose such famous Ranger captains as Ben and Henry McCulloch, Samuel H. Walker, W. A. The DPS provided the Rangers with high-powered cars equipped with the latest radio equipment as well as with a large array of sophisticated weapons and defensive armor. The Texas Rangers also tracked down outlaws like Sam Bass and John Wesley Hardin. From the Republic of Texas era to the early-twentieth century, this exhibition examines how and in what … Published by the Texas State Historical Association. Texas is full of heroes. Twelve years later, on November 24, 1835, Texas lawmakers officially established a force called the Texas Rangers. Recruits had to be between the ages of thirty and fifty, have at least eight years of on-the-job police experience, and have an intermediate certificate signifying 400 to 600 hours of classroom instruction. Ron Washington, 664-611, .521 W-L%, 2020 Rangers https://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/entries/texas-rangers. Then in March 1859 Ford and his men were assigned to the Brownsville area, where, together with the United States Army, they gained only limited success against the "Red Robber of the Rio Grande," Juan N. Cortina. Their basic five-company structure remained intact, but changes occurred in hiring and promotion procedures. / For fourteen years after this campaign, however, the Rangers ceased to be either significant or effective. Do you have a blog? By September 1996 the force had expanded to 105. For nearly 200 years, the world-famous scouts have been synonymous with the image of the Lone Star State. But in 1874 the state Democrats returned to power, and so did the Rangers. Although the Rangers were often outnumbered by the Native Americans, the Rangers’ fighting style, horsemanship, and use of revolver pistols overmatched their opponents. Sam Houston, upon being reelected to the presidency in December 1841, realized that Ranger companies were the least expensive and the most efficient way to protect the frontier. Over the next thirty years-the Garrison era-the Rangers became the plainclothesmen of the DPS: they were the detectives, and the Highway Patrol officers were the uniformed state police. Support the Handbook today. For nearly 200 years, the world-famous scouts have been synonymous with the image of the Lone Star State. Late in the spring they moved north of the Red River to "chastise" a large band of "hostiles," in the process killing the noted Comanche chief, Iron Jacket. During the Garrison era the Rangers operated at peak performance, thereby enhancing their prestige. The Handbook of Texas is free-to-use thanks to the support of readers like you. In the spring of 1875 they moved into the Nueces Strip (between Corpus Christi and the Rio Grande) to combat Cortina's "favorite bravos." The Texas Rangers are the stuff of legends, heroes of Hollywood films, and the ideal image of a Texas lawman that youngsters grow up dreaming of becoming. The legislature then slashed salaries and budgets and further reduced the force to thirty-two men. Under Garrison's successor, Col. Wilson E. Speir, the force expanded to seventy-three men in 1969, eighty-two in 1971, eighty-eight in 1974, and ninety-four a year later. We present them here for purely educational purposes. Subsequently, captains Bill Wilson, J. L. "Skippy" Rundell, H. R. "Lefty" Block, and Maurice Cook continued to improve the force. accessed October 24, 2020, But not until November 24, 1835, did Texas lawmakers institute a specific force known as the Texas Rangers. The Rangers therefore became an important part of a much larger law-enforcement team. In 1823, only two years after Anglo-American colonization formally began in Texas, empresario Stephen F. Austin hired ten experienced frontiersmen as "Rangers" for a punitive expedition against a band of Indians. Handbook of Texas Online, In 1874 he and his men helped curb lawlessness engendered by the deadly Sutton-Taylor Feud in Dewitt County. Find out more. As for promotion, seniority and performance were the all-determining factors. As a reward for such high standards, the Texas Rangers were equipped with cutting-edge technology, like radios and fast cars, and an array of weaponry. Walter Prescott Webb, The Texas Rangers (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1935; rpt., Austin: University of Texas Press, 1982). As for transportation, the Rangers depended on free railroad passes or their own horses along the border. In 1914, early in World War I, problems in the border country focused on Mexican nationalism, German intrigue and sabotage, and American draft dodgers. Each had to be a "crack shot." After a slew of bandits — including Bonnie Parker, Clyde Barrow, and George “Machine Gun” Kelly — swung through Texas during the 1930s, Ma Ferguson’s successor, James Allred, reestablished the Texas Rangers under the newly created Texas Department of Public Safety. The Texas Rangers emerged as the elite unit of Texas law enforcement, and they continue to serve that role today. Subscribe to our Free Newsletter, This Month in Sports ReferenceFind out when we add a feature or make a change. Gen. Zachary Taylor relied on the Rangers to push ahead of his army, scout territory, and engage Mexican troops in skirmishes.